On Friday, the Oakland Athletics made a move with the Milwaukee Brewers to acquire outfielder Khris Davis. In exchange, the Brewers acquired catching prospect Jacob Nottingham and pitching prospect Bowdien 'Bubba' Derby.
Davis is coming off of his third consecutive productive season. The 28-year old outfielder has hit 19 percent better than the league average over his 1142 career major league plate appearances.
Davis' defense hasn't been particularly good -- he cost his team 10 runs last year by FanGraphs Def -- but his power is undeniable. While his strikeout rate increased last season to 27.7 percent, Davis still hit 27 home runs and managed an ISO of .258. Among all major leaguers with at least 400 plate appearances, Davis places 12th by ISO just after Nelson Cruz and ahead of J.D. Martinez.
To make room on the roster, the Athletics have designated pitcher Sean Nolin for assignment.
For parting with their peaking outfielder, the Brewers brought in two prospects. Nottingham, a catcher, became the 15th-best prospect in the Brewers system according to MLB.com. If that seems underwhelming, perhaps the 6th-best catching prospect in all of the majors will pique your interest.
While he won't be 21 years old until April and he has only played up to High-A, Nottingham is a fairly tantalizing prospect. Over his 258 plate appearances in High-A, Nottingham has managed an impressive wOBA of .361. While his power seems to be his main tool, Nottingham seems to be a bit of a free-swinger from his above average strikeout rate and very low walk rate. As the age of defensive-emphasis is beginning, scouts also seem to like Nottingham's arm.
Whether you call him Bubba or Bubby or Bowdien, Derby will be turning 22 at the end of February. He appeared in 12 games -- starting in eight of them -- for the Athletics' Low-A affiliate last year. Derby posted a remarkable strand rate of 95.4 percent. That could indicate some regression, but Derby simultaneously showed -- in his small sample of 34.2 innings pitched -- that he can strike out 34.9 percent of the batters he faces.
Derby faced 129 batters, allowed 29 to reach base, allowed three of those runners to score, and struck out 45. Derby was drafted in the sixth-round of this past draft and still has a potentially long road to the majors. But the Brewers can add another long-term prospect to their already deep system.